Varroa Update

I make no apologies for banging on about Varroa treatments, it is the most important problem we have at the moment now that Synthetic Pyrethroid Resistant Varroa Mites are about. I know of some beekeepers who are not giving the problem the attention it deserves and their bees will take the rap.

The colonies of one of SE Herts members I reported on in last months Newsletter which were still heavily infested with Varroa after applying Apiguard as recommended after the supers were taken off, phoned me a few days ago. Both colonies are now working very well taking in big lumps of pollen, and the mite drops are are down to 3 to 4 mites per week after dropping some 2000 mites since early September.

A few days ago I had a beekeeper ring me asking if he could purchase a nuc from me. He had been referred to me by our County Secretary (thanks Helen), he was not a member of any association. He had purchased nucs from Thornes, collected swarms, and continued to lose them winter after winter. I will not supply bees to anyone who is not a member of their county association. This IDIOT had no idea why his bees had died and knew little or nothing about Varroa control. These are the kind of people who put bees into brood disease contaminated equipment, give their neighbouring beekeepers hell, and should not be encouraged.

For those who are, or are thinking about using FORMIC ACID treatments I would suggest paying a visit to The guy seems to have done a lot of research into the application and monitoring. He also keeps some 2000 hives in Kelowna BC Canada. I am not on the internet so I don't know what you will find.

I have had several people ring me about making Thymol Grease Patties. They have used a soft fat and their mixture has turned out all runny with a layer of liquid fat on the surface! 'PURA' is a 100% pure vegetable oil. It is supplied as a solid block wrapped in greaseproof paper with no additives, ie no water, emulsifiers, preservatives, or colourings. It is primarily sold as a deep frying oil. It becomes a liquid when warm to the touch (approx 45°C). It is sold in Sainsbury's at around 57p for 500 grams. I am told that when properly mixed grease patties should have the texture and appearance of mashed potatoes.

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